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Swirl: Learn R, in R (swirlstats.com)
111 points by Tomte on Feb 12, 2016 | hide | past | favorite | 20 comments



I'm the lead developer of swirl. Let me know if you have any questions or comments.


Thanks for your work on this. Been immensely helpful for this newb.

One piece of advice, I would ensure QA tests include checks to make sure that the skip function works. When the ggplot package was updated, the update broke the Getting and Cleaning data module, the ggplot units. The questions were not answerable and the skip function didn't work either.

You are the reason I was able to pass the R programming unit, John Hopkins Coursera. Thank you sooooo much.


Several professors at my school highly recommend Swirl to students brand new to programming, and the results have been pretty good overall. Thanks for working on this!


O'Reilly Code School has a module for R[1] that's amazing. No installs required as you use a virtual terminal.

[1] http://tryr.codeschool.com/


Clarification: Code School is owned by Pluralsight. O'Reilly sponsored this course, making it free for anyone to take.


R programming course from John Hopkins Uni. in Coursera [1] also uses swirl. [1] https://www.coursera.org/learn/r-programming/


I first used swirl while taking several of the R Coursera courses from Hopkins. While the courses were fantastic, swirl was how I learned the material to be able to complete the assignments and projects.

I highly recommend using swirl if you're just getting into R.


Awesome idea! Would be useful to be able to see some screenshots/video/gif of the experience on the site before installing the package though.


I used it when I was taking the John Hopkins data science series on Coursera. I thought it was very basic and didn't learn much from it. That was middle of last year. Don't know if it is more challenging now.


Swirl is pretty freaking cool. I've gone through a bunch of swirl modules lately and find it a very handy and useful mechanism for learning R. Definitely give it a look if you're starting out with R.


At DataCamp you can play with an online version of swirl: https://www.datacamp.com/courses/r-programming-with-swirl


This might even be useful when applied to learning say data.table or other parts of the Hadleyverse. These days data.table is not an option given the size of data and how slow R data frames are.


Interesting, I'm going to look into this after work. I wonder if it teaches statistical theory and R or just the mechanics of R. Because the later would be much more useful.


It teaches the language. It has been around for several years now. It is pretty use full for some people to get the syntax of R down. Some online classes even have it report to them for extra credit etc.

The more I use R the less I use of base and mostly use the Hadley Wickham Universe of dplyr, tidyr, ggplot/ggvis etc.. This teaches mostly base and not the functional programming parts (Boy do I HATE loops and R base has a great list system that people seem to ignore)


The "Hadley Wickham Universe", yeah, his stuff is awesome. magrittr and rvest are more awesomeness from Hadley that make web scraping a pleasure. [1]

[1] http://blog.rstudio.org/2014/11/24/rvest-easy-web-scraping-w...


Or more concisely, the Hadleyverse. [0]

[0] http://adolfoalvarez.cl/the-hitchhikers-guide-to-the-hadleyv...


Just so credit it given appropriately, magrittr was from Stefan Milton Bache.


For anyone interested in data analysis in R or Python (specifically Wickham's dplyr or McKinney's pandas), I can't recommend reading Wickham's paper on the split-apply-combine methodology enough. It really helped me understand working without looping.

The paper's examples might be slightly dated as they use dplyr's predecessor, plyr. I imagine they're pretty similar though.

http://vita.had.co.nz/papers/plyr.html


Thanks!


Is there a similar one for numpy/pandas?




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